GTE Localize

How to Tailor Your Video Game Experience With Thai Translation Services

Posted by Gummy Tran on December 22, 2021.

As one of SEA’s highest growth gaming markets, Thailand has become juicy to every video game brand using Thai translation services. 

To tap the explosive growth in Thai gaming, you’ll need more than video game translation. Your video game experience must be tailored for Thais by overcoming cultural barriers and complying with its entertainment content regulations.

We’ll provide you with some helpful tips for a successful video game localization with Thai translation services in this post.

Why Tailoring Game Experience Matters 

Thai Translation Services

Thailand’s gaming ecosystem has been getting bigger in recent years. The onset of the pandemic boosted it further with gamers in lockdown and 2020 saw over a billion dollars in gaming revenue from 32 million Thai gamers (Newzoo, April 2021).

In addition, advancements in technology have made video games accessible to different categories of Thai users. Four out of ten Thais consider gaming to be one of their top five entertainment activities (Newzoo, April 2021), which is fueling year-on-year increases in the number of gamers and gaming revenue. They enjoy video games and are willing to pay a premium for the best products. In exchange, they expect an excellent gaming experience and good customer service.

That it is worth tailoring, though, the journey will be a tough row to hoe.

One of the most challenging homework for developers is to meet the expectations of two different groups of gamers: hardcore enthusiasts and newbies. Each group has different expectations from online games, so finding a balance when tailoring your video games experience is not an easy task.

Moreover, tapping into a new market and raising awareness has been more difficult than ever before. Gamers now have over one million video games to choose from. Also, they are bombarded with tons of appealing things from social media, streaming platforms, and several other forms of entertainment that you need to compete with. You have to create an excellent game experience to cut through the noise and get your name noticed. 

 

Recreate Video Games for Thai Gamers 

Thai Translation Services

The process of creating your video game to match Thais is called video game localization. The trick is to go beyond a simple translation but a version that makes Thais feel your game is made for them.

#1. Culture adaptation with Thai translation services

Adapting to local culture is one of the essentials to get your game engaged with Thai users. Resultantly, developers often include elements – like characters or costumes – that resonate with Thai culture. Or create events that mirror local holidays, such as Songkran (Thai New Year). For instance, you can use a water cannon fighting mode to reflect the contemporary take on the Songkran tradition of sprinkling water to symbolize the washing away of evil thoughts and acts.

Example: To make the game more recognizable to local players, the character wears a Thai-style costume.

Developer: Longtu Game

However, making too many cultural changes may result in a fake product that no longer resembles the original game. To make your game attractive and genuine across many cultures and languages, you’ll need a team of Thai translation services that excel in video game localization.

#2. Language adjustments with Thai translation services

Thai Translation Services

In Thailand, it is fine to keep certain names/words in their original English form, especially if they are new to Thai culture/there is no direct translation/the translation is too long, like “Ragnarok”, “Hogwarts” or even “AI Artificial Intelligence”. This is partly because English is taught as a foreign language in all Thai secondary schools, thus the English alphabet is familiar to most Thai users.  

Example: Some names, such as character names, can be displayed in English alongside Thai-translated text.

Developer: Garena

Example: It’s acceptable to display names, such as store items, in English with Thai translations.

Developer: Garena

It is also encouraged to use informal, spoken-style language rather than formal one when getting text translated to the Thai language. Thai gamers prefer to read short and simple texts, especially on mobile. Wherever possible, you should use symbols or graphics to convey meaning instead of a translation, particularly if the translation is long. 

Example: The message is converted into simple, easy-to-understand spoken language.

Developer: Longtu Game

Don’t rely on word-for-word or machine translations. Although they are quick, you still need a professional Thai translation services provider that knows the context, nuances, and culture well to convey the correct meaning and values.

 

Localize Marketing Materials and Customer Service with Thai Translation Services

#1. Marketing 

Thai Translation Services

When it comes to tailoring the gaming experience for the Thai market using Thai translation services, both marketing and customer service are critical. If you don’t properly localize your marketing, you might not catch the eye of your target audience or attract the wrong ones. Either can have devastating effects on localization ROI. 

In your marketing materials, be aware that translated text length can affect your design and display. So make sure the new text has a clean layout. You might consider using shorter words/images/symbols for a more easy-to-understand and concise translation. 

Example: You could use an icon such as “<<” ​instead of writing “Rewind” or “ย้อนกลับไป” in Thai.

Example: Font style and size in a trailer video game are easily readable and fit the layout.

Developer: Gravity Interactive

Example: Text fonts are localized in a style that fits the game, feels appealing, and is easy for users to understand.

Developer: Longtu Game

#2. Customer service with Thai translation services

Thai gamers expect personalized customer support, that’s why a great number of offline and online businesses offer customer hotlines. If that’s not an option, make sure users can reach you on major social media sites such as Facebook pages, or Line – a favorable messaging platform in Thailand, etc. 

Besides your global social media channels, it’s worth setting a local one so Thai speakers can get in touch with you, while you can post regular updates to encourage active discussion and user involvement. 

 

Test the Quality of the Translation

Thai Translation Services

When you wish to target a certain gaming experience, the quality of the video game translation is critical. Confusion-causing translations or unnatural-sounding dialogues may quickly ruin the atmosphere and impact your business. 

Gamers may chuckle at first, but in the long term, they will not enjoy the game with Thai translation services. Before you know it, whole gaming communities have disclosed your translation failures, and screenshots from your game have gone viral. We already saw many expensive lessons from this, so be sure to carefully test the quality of your Thai translation services before actually entering.

 

Tailor Your Video Game Experience and Avoid Censorship

Respecting legal guidelines is one of the most important rules when pursuing overseas markets. The Thai market is no exception. You may even rewrite characters and remove violent scenes to comply with age limitations and get your game properly rated.

LINE, despite being an established leader in Thailand, fell into issues with the authorities over “culturally insensitive stickers” on its messaging platform in 2016. 

You can perform effective damage control, but it’s best to avoid this problem completely by conducting some research into local politics to know what content is suitable.

 

Work with a Cost-saving Company for Your Thai Translation Services

With rapid smartphone adoption and widespread social media use, Thailand is a promising market for developers. To gain the key to success in this market, one of the most important strategies is to have a Thai-tailored video game. 

With qualified language and translation skills as well as a deep understanding of the Thai culture and market, GTE Localize can be a reliable companion on your way to entering this market using Thai translation services. 

Thai Translation Services

Thai Translation Services delivered by GTE Localize is not a mere translation but a process of customization to get your video game’s content fitted with the culture, language, buying habits, and related nuances of your market. We understand the difficulties in doing video games translation and help you out of them!

Have a 1:1 consultancy with our Thai translation services experts and get your project started right now!